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account as would warrant its use as a class text-book.

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR. By means of the first five chapters a reader who knows a little about the elements of electricity and magnetism [The Editor does not hold himself responsible for opinions will be able to appreciate the nature of electric waves expressed by his correspondents. Neither can he undertake and of Hertz's achievement in producing them. Then,

to return, or to correspond with the writers of, rejected after briefly alluding to the early system of Marconi,

manuscripts intended for this or any other part of NATURE. the writer passes on to the particular devices of Dr.

No notice is taken of anonymous communications.] Braun. The book is well and clearly written, but is in no sense a complete compendium on the subject, Mean Temperatures of High Southern Latitudes. and the reader who derives all his knowledge from ON p. 131 of NATURE of December 8, 1904, you give an it will be inclined to think that there is only one system approximate calculation of the mean temperatures of high in the world, and that Eichhorn is its prophet. More southern latitudes, by Mr. Krebs, based upon the observrecent methods of detecting waves by means of effects ations of the most recent Antarctic expeditions. arising from hysteresis in iron are dismissed in a couple For the new edition of my “ Lehrbuch der Meteorologie" of pages, where there is no reference to Rutherford's I have made a similar calculation, and have made use of early detector working on the same principle, while the observations in order to calculate afresh the mean Lodge's steel-mercury-contact detector does not appear temperature of the southern hemisphere. My preliminary even to be mentioned, although the “ Literature

results are as follows:appendix at the end includes the year 1903. In

S. latitude
50 бо 70

So appendix ii. the Thomson-Kirchhoff theory of the

Yearly temperature

55 oscillatory discharge of a condenser is given; the

- 115 - 198 C. January

**3 3'2

0.8 credit, of course, belongs to Thomson (Lord Kelvin). July


- 31'5 , Notes on the Natural History of the Bell Rock. By Mean temperature of both hemispheres

J. M. Campbell. Pp. xv +112; title-piece. (Edinburgh: David Douglas, 1904.) Price 35. 6d. net.

January July As a record of the various types of aërial and marine S. hemisphere 17:3 10-3


70 C. life commonly seen by the guardians of the lonely


80 22-5 15'2

Whole earth lighthouses of the east coast of Scotland in particular,

126 16'4 14'4

3:8, and of the British coasts in general, these random notes Ferrel and myself formerly determined the mean temperaare worthy of all commendation, more especially as ture of the southern hemisphere to be 15° C. (from temperathey are written by a man who does not appear to have tures up to 55° S. lat.)." The new observations in high had a scientific training. Mr. Campbell was assistant southern latitudes have now shown that the southern hemilight-keeper on the Bell Rock for the long period of sphere is considerably colder than the northern, viz. by nine years, and he is therefore well qualified to know

about 1°.5 C. The publication of the temperature observa all that is to be known with regard to the general for this question ; in my calculations I could only make use

ations of the Discovery's second year will be very important habits of the commoner and more conspicuous species of the observations relating to the first year. frequenting the environment of his station; while a

Vienna, December 30, 1904.

JULIUS HANN. period of such a length is sufficient to include the visits of many of the rarer stragglers. Most or all of the notes, it appears, have been previously published in Reversal of Charge from Electrical Induction Machines. the local Press of the neighbouring mainland, and they are certainly worthy of rescue from such oblivion. I accidentally observed, on stopping the machine, giving

Last week, while working with a small Voss machine, The only point for regret is, perhaps, that the author

about two turns in the wrong direction and then re-starting does not say more about bird migration. Mr. James the machine in the original direction, that the poles had Murdoch, late secretary to the Board of Northern reversed. I repeated the experiment a dozen times, and Lighthouses, has contributed an interesting introduc- invariably the reversal occurred. The reversal was observed tion on lighthouses and lighthouse-men in general. by examining the spark between the knobs.

R. L. I mentioned the fact to Prof. Gray, and we then tried

the effect with vacuum discharge tube connected to the The British Journal Photographic Almanac, 1905. knobs. While the tube was fresh the reversal occurred,

Edited by Thomas Bedding. Pp. 1612. (London: but after a little time the reversal occurred but seldom. Henry Greenwood and Co., 1904.) Price Is. 6d. It was found, however, that if the discharge was made net.

to pass by connecting one terminal of the tube to earth, the This bulky volume, with its mine of miscellaneous

other terminal to one pole of the machine, while the second

pole of the machine was kept insulated, then the reversal photographic information, is compiled on the same

invariably occurred when the procedure mentioned was lines as the earlier issues, and will be found to be a followed. necessary adjunct to the studio and library. Among

We next tried the large Wimshurst machine in the laborthe host of articles in these pages may be mentioned atory with the same results. It was noticed, however, when a condensed summary of the story of the British the induction rods were so arranged that the machine Journal of Photography and the almanac which excited both ways, that the reversal did not occur. appeared in the jubilee number of the above mentioned As I do not remember to have seen the experiment journal, and also a selected number of the jubilee mentioned before, I think it worth directing attention to, as articles. Recent novelties in apparatus, &c., by the it provides a simple way of getting the discharge to pass in editor, forms also a conspicuous feature, and represents whatever direction it is required.

GEORGE W. WALKER. the progress in this branch of photography. No less important are the practical notes on numerous subjects,

Physical Laboratory, The University, Glasgow. the formulæ, tables, list of photographic societies of the United Kingdom, &c., all of which add to the

Fishing at Night. utility of the volume. The full indices to advertisers

There are, as I have explained in the book referred to and contents make a quick reference to any portion of by “ S. W."'in NATURE of December 29, 1904 (p. 201), many the book quite an easy matter, an important consider- reasons for night-fishing by our pilchard and other fishing ation in a book containing 1612 pages. The processed fleets. He quotes one, however, which is quite unsatisillustrations and woodcuts are as numerous as ever. factory, namely, the convenience of catching the morning market. To a few ports this might apply, but as a general and there are no striking structural differences among all rule the fish-train for Billingsgate leaves the coast towns the varieties of logwood. about six or seven in the evening, the fish reaching the There can be no doubt that "bastard" logwood is a central market by van first thing in the morning, The distinct variety or subspecies of Haematoxylin Campechi actual reasons for this preference for night-fishing are anum, notwithstanding the slight morphological difference many. In the case of pilchards taken in drift-nets, the that distinguishes it from the red " logwood and blue habits of the fish themselves furnish the explanation. In logwood. the case of trawlers, the reasons are diverse. In some cases The Jamaica Bulletin has dore good service to the colony the water is so shallow that the nets would be seen and 1 in bringing the fact prominently before the planters thai avoided by the fish in daylight, and this, in fact, is still more the admixture of useless wood which has been the source the case with the drift-nets. Elsewhere, they trawl at night of unnecessary loss to them may be avoided. because they want soles, just as many Plymouth boats

S. N. C. trawl by day because their best market is for the rougheri kinds of fish. There is no night-trawling in Cornwall by reason of the local regulations, which clear the sea by !

Intelligence of Animals. night of other fishing craft in order that the drifters may The instance of intelligence in a cat recorded by Mr. work without interruption or risk.

F. G. AFLALO. T. S. Patterson on p. 201 is not unusual. I have known 14 Westover Villas, Bournemouth, Hants.

several cats, all of them males, that were accustomed to rattle the handle or some part of the lock in order to get a door opened.


Cambridge. The Cost of Chemical Synthesis. In your review of Prof. Meldola's " Synthesis of Vital Products,” your reviewer argues that though certain products, viz. alizarin and indigo, can be synthesised so A NEW CONTRIBUTION TO ISSYRIAN cheaply that natural products cannot compete with them in

HISTORY. the market”; yet this is of little interest from the biochemical point of view.


N a handy little volume, to which we have much May I point out that this argument is even stronger than pleasure in directing the attention of our readers, it seems, for the cheapness is quite accidental, and due to Mr. L. W. King, or the British Museum, has pubthe fact that the world requires coal gas, and iron.

lished the cuneitorm text and a translation of a very If the syntheses above were dependent on anthracene and

important historical Assyrian document, which has naphthalene obtained from coal treated strictly ad hoc this been recently exhibited in the Assyrian and Babylonian cheapness would disappear.


room in the British Museum. This document is a slab 43-45 Great Tower Street, London, E.C., January 2.

of limestone, about 151 inches long and un inches wide, which is inscribed with sixty-seven lines of

cuneiform text, thirty-seven lines being on the obverse "Bastard” Logwood

and thirty on the reverse. The writing is in bold, well

formed characters, but it seems to have been cut someTue Jamaica Bulletin of the Department of Agriculture

what hurriedly, for the mason was obliged to make for November, 1904, prints a very interesting article on this

nine erasures, and in two passages he has left out a subject by B. C. Gruenberg and William Gies, contributed

sign, apparently without having detected the omission. originally to the Bulletin of the Torrey Botanical Club.

We need not discuss the palæographical importance During the past few years the growers of logwood in Jamaica have been greatly disturbed by an apparent in

of the text, which is of considerable interest, and it is crease on their properties of an unmerchantable variety of only necessary to state that it exhibits the style of the plant known as “ bastard " logwood; the exportation Assyrian characters employed in monumental inscripof this wood along with real logwood has served to condemn tions in the early part of the thirteenth century before all the logwood from the districts which have shipped it. Christ.

** Bastard " logwood differs from the genuine varieties, The contents of the text, which is actually the official from the dyer's standpoint, in yielding little or no hæma

summary of the principal events in the reign of Tukultitoxylin, but instead a yellowish-green pigment which is of

Ninib I., King of Assyria about B.c. 1275, fall readily no value, and which, when mixed with the commercial into four divisions, which respectively record the king's extract, reduces the characteristic tinctorial properties.

name and titles, his military expeditions, the foundChips of the “ bastard " logwood present a yellow, pale

ation of the city Kar Tukulti-Ninib, and an appeal to pink, white, or even chocolate coloured surface, instead of

future rulers. The stone tablet or slab which supplies the dark red or deep purple bronze-tinted colour of the best logwood. There appears great uncertainty, even when the

this information was either placed in a niche in the are cut down, as to whether a tree is really a

wall or laid in a box of stone or clay, and then built * bastard" tree or not. What is known as a “bastard' up in the foundation of the city Kar Tukulti-Ninib. In tree is frequently dark enough when first cut to lead one to passing, Mr. King discusses briefly but clearly the believe that it is a good red-wood tree, but instead of question of foundation deposits, both in Egypt and darkening with age it remains the same colour, or becomes Assyria, and shows how the ideas concerning them lighter rather than darker. “Bastard” wood is not the in the two countries agree in some respects and ditier result of disease or of any lack of vigour; the trees pro- in others. ducing it are perfectly healthy and normal.

Turning now to the campaigns of Tukulti-Ninib I.. It is not the result of soil or climatic conditions, since

we find that in the first he conquered the Kuti and the bastard and normal trees are found growing side by side

inhabitants of four other districts; in the second he under absolutely identical conditions. It is not the result of immaturity ; aged trees may produce provinces; in the third he vanquished forty kings of

became master of the land of Shubari, and ten other bastard wood. These facts point to heredity as the probable cause of

the land of Na'iri; and in the fourth he defeated the trouble, that is, certain trees produce " bastard" Bibeashu, King of Babylon, and completely subjugated wood because they grow from seed of a bastard ” tree; the regions of Sumer and Accad. The last campaign in other words, " bastard logwood is a variety of was undoubtedly the most important of all, for' with Haematoxylin Campechianum that normally produces little or no hæmatoxylin. The chemical differences existing

I "Records of the Reign of Tukulti-Ninib I., King of 'Assyria, aku

n.C. 1275." By L W. King, M.A., F.S.A. Pp. xvi + 185, and in illustaamong all these logwoods are quantitatively very slight, tions. (London: Luzac and Co., 1904.) Price 6s. nei.


the fall of Babylon Tukulti-Ninib became master of inscription is very important, for it enables us to assign all Mesopotamia. The resistance offered by the the date of Tukulti-Ninib's reign provisionally to about Babylonians was stubborn in the extreme, and the B.C. 1275; its length cannot at present be stated with Assyrian king slew large numbers of them and de- exactness. stroyed their city wall. Tukulti-Ninib looted the city In addition to the interesting text of Tukulti-Ninib, and plundered the treasuries of E-sagil, the great of which a general summary has been given above, temple of Marduk, and he carried off to Assyria not Mr. King adds the inscriptions of Shalmaneser I. from only Bibeashu himself, but the statue of his god the fragments of inscribed bowls now in the British Marduk. No victory could have been more complete, Museum, a passage from the synchronous history, and even at this distance of time it is impossible not the inscriptions from the lapis-lazuli seal of Shagaraktito feel some sympathy with the vanquished Babylonian Shuriash, and Sennacherib's accounts of his capture king when we read that he, a prisoner and bound in of Babylon both in 702 B.C. and 689 B.C.; in fact, every chains, was led, with his god Marduk, into the bit of evidence which relates to the period of which presence of Ashur, the great god of Assyria, as his book treats, and is found in the cuneiform inscripwitnesses of the comprehensive manner in which tions, is appended for the assistance of the reader, with Tukulti-Ninib had performed Ashur's commands. full transliterations and translations. That Mr. King

The account of the conquest of Bibeashu and of the capture of Babylon by TukultiNinib is especially important from a chronological point of view, for it establishes beyond

tie a doubt the fact that these two kings were contemporaneous. For some time past it has been known from the " Babylonian Chronicle" that Tukulti-Ninib conquered Babylonia, but the name of the Babylonian king, although it occurs on this document, was not recognised. Both Mr. Pinches, who published a translation of this “ Chronicle," and Dr. Winckler, who published a copy of the text, misread the passage in which the name occurs. The identification of Bibeashu and the correct reading of his name we owe to Mr. King, who has succeeded in establishing a new and very important synchronism in Assyrian and Babylonian history. Thus the system of chronology which made Bibeashu to live sisty or seventy years after Tukulti-Ninib I. is proved to be incorrect.

In connection with the conquest of Babylon by Tukulti-Ninib I., mention must here be made of the copy of an inscription which is found on a small clay tablet (K. 2673), now in the British Museum. This copy was made from a lapis-lazuli seal, on which the original inscription was engraved by a scribe of Sennacherib, who caused some lines to be added to commemorate his conquest of Babylon and the recovery of the seal by himself. The lapis-lazuli seal, as Mr. King tells us, was not made for Tukulti-Ninib I., as was once generally thought, but for Shagarakti-Shuriash, a Kassite king. When Tukulti-Ninib captured Babylon he found the seal there, and carried it off to Nineveh, and he had his own inscription engraved upon it without erasing that of Shagarakti-Shuriash. The seal was subsequently, in circumstances unknown to us, carried back to Babylon, where Sennacherib found it about 600 years later, and he, of course, restored it to Fig 1.--Limestone Tablet inscribed with the annals of Tukulti-Ninib I., King o Nineveh, and, having added his own in

Assyria. From " Records of the Reign of Tukulti-Ninib I." scription to it, had copy of the inscription of the Kassite king, that of the King of has published not only a new, but important historical

Issyria, and of his own made on a tablet. The first inscription is clear, and all who are in any way familiar to translate the copy of Tukulti-Ninib's inscription on with the subject will find his sober and concise observthe tablet was Mr. George Smith, but that of ations on its contents helpful and stimulating. Messrs. Shagarakti-Shuriash baffled him, and he failed to read Harrison's large cuneiform type has been used for the characters of which it was composed. Profs, printing the text, and paper and binding leave nothing Hommel, Bezold, and Schrader were likewise unable to be desired. We note that the volume is the first of to translate it, and Mr. King has been the first to prove a series of “ Studies in Eastern History u hich that, in addition to the words added to the seal by the Luzac and Co. are about to publish, and we feel that order of Sennacherib, the copy contains two distinct if the succeeding volumes are as valuable as the inscriptions, namely, one of Shagarakti-Shuriash and “Records of the Reign of Tukulti-Ninib I." the success one of Tukulti-Ninib 1. The copy of Sennacherib's of the undertaking is assured.


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and various phenomena. Earthquakes which have a

submarine origin are most frequent in summer, when UNDER the title of “ Recent Seismological Investi- the level of the Pacific Ocean bordering Japan is

gations in Japan," Baron Dairoku Kikuchi, higher than in winter. Those originating on the land former Minister of Education, has issued for private are most frequent in winter, at which season barocirculation only an "address" prepared for the late ex- metric pressure is at a maximum. Out of forty-seven

destructive earthquakes which 1

originated beneath the Pacific,

twenty-three were accompanied by 1

tsunami or sea waves, which probably means that on these occasions marked and sudden changes had taken place in the configuration of the sea bed.

Among the instruments which are described we notice a hori. zontal pendulum the bob of which is controlled by a small inverted pendulum. Although the vertical and horizontal dimensions of this apparatus are each only i metre, Prof. Omori tells us that a period of one minute can be obtained without difficulty. Macroseismic motion is described, and after this reference is made to microseisms or pulsations. These two classes of movement Prof. Omori finds alternate in their frequency, SO that when the small movements are at a minimum the larger ones

may be expected. This observ. Fig. 1.- Model of a Farmer's Cottage. Showing the essential points of construction recommended

ation, we learn, has enabled him by the Earthquake Investigation Committee. The chief points to be observed are diagonal

several occasions to predict bracing, the use of iron straps, and the avoidance of mortices and other cuts at joints.

within ten or twelve hours the

occurrence of an earthquake. position in St. Louis. When we look at this address, The geological investigations which have been made which is a quarto volume of 136 pages filled with chiefly refer to the survey of volcanoes, which is a illustrations, we feel that its author should have doffed work outside that done by the Geological Survey. his modesty and called it seismology as developed in The investigations of relationships that may exist Japan. To describe the work more closely, we shall between earthquakes and various physical phenomena not be far from the mark if we say it is an epitomised translation of a number of publications which to Europeans have hitherto been cryptogramic. It gives us not only a résumé of sixteen numbers of the publications of the Tokyo Earthquake Investigation Committeecalled for short the E. 1. C.which have been published in a European language, and with which we are more or less familiar, but there is added an abstract of forty-seven numbers or volumes published in Chinese idiographs. Many seismologists have looked at them and wondered what they meant. The contents of these sixty-three publications have been epitomised, mixed, and systematised.

After an introduction to the recent"

investigations, which tell us that the first earthquake recorded in Japan was in A.D. 416, and reference to various investi- Fig. 2.-Nagoya Spinning Mill. Showing the effects of the Mino-Owari Earthquake of 1901 on a gations made by Europeans in

brick building and on a chimney constructed according to European practice. Japan, we are introduced to the system under which investigations and their results which affect or are affected by strain in the earth's have been classified and discussed.

crust are particularly interesting. At present conUnder the heading " Statistical” we find data tinuous magnetic observations are being made in Japan relating to the distribution of earthquakes in space at five stations, from which, amongst other things, it and time, their relation to meteorological conditions, has been observed that on several occasions magnetic


needles have been disturbed before or at the time of maps, very numerous and complete, illustrate both the large earthquakes. Speaking generally about these tribal areas and the range of the various social investigations, Baron Kikuchi considers that they systems. promise to throw light upon the state of underground In this matter of organisation Dr. Howitt traces the stress, and as one of the chief objects of the E. 1. C. is gradations in a way conclusive enough to point to the to devise means to predict earthquakes which may be probable course of evolution. In particular he reduces taken as announcements that stress has been relieved, the problem of exogamy to the bisection of the comit will be recognised that the inquiries relating to local munity into two exogamous intermarrying moietiesmagnetic disturbance are of a promising nature. the typical Australian system—which bisection is

Other phenomena which receive attention are vari- ! based, as he implies, on the prohibition of marriage ations in latitude, the determination of gravity, under- between brothers and sisters. It is to be regretted that ground temperatures, seiches, changes in the level of he does not fully discuss this ground of exogamy. He water in wells, and the elastic constants of rocks. quotes Dr. Frazer and the present writer as having

The last section of this interesting volume is an independently reached the same conclusion, and it account of investigations which have been made with seems that we are at last approaching unanimity as the object of reducing the disastrous effects of earth- to this primal law of human social relations.

He quakes to a minimum. To the practical person this is no doubt the most important branch of all seismological research. Already it has accomplished much, and after a severe shaking we have learned that in Japan new types of structures are to be seen standing amongst the ruins of older types.

We welcome Baron Kikuchi's volume, and trust that although its circulation is private it may also be wide.



DR. A. W. HOWITT is our highest

authority on the native tribes of Australia. Ever since the publication of " Kamilaroi and Kurnai," in 1880, he has been adding to our knowledge of the most instructive and interesting aboriginal population in the world. The present work, therefore, which summarises the data collected by him during forty years of personal intercourse with the “blackfellows,” is of the greatest importance. Most of the material here incorporated was written up before 1889; a few modifications of theory and many new facts have been introduced, and some corrections made, but the broad deductions remain unaltered.

The main body of the work is preceded by a useful summary and criticism of the principal views that have been put forward as to the origin and ethnological affinities of the Tasmanian-Australian stock; Dr. Howitt Fig. 1.- One of the Krauatungalung Clan of the Kurnai Tribe. From Howitt's “The Native rejects both the Dravidian and the

Tribes of South-East Australia." Malayan hypotheses. The tribes here dealt with came into contact with the white man at agrees with Spencer and Gillen that the primary a date too early, perhaps, to allow them much chance functions of totemism

in existence before of survival; many of them are now practically extinct, exogamy became established, and that the relation and most of them are at least deorganised. The area between totemism and exogamy is secondary only. they occupied is about one-quarter of the continent, On the other hand he sees no reason to modify his extending on the north to near the tropic of Capricorn, original view that the bisection was a resormatory and on the south bordered by the Southern and Pacific measure, instituted after a long reign of the “C'nOceans, connected by Bass Strait. This area has a divided Commune." It is doubtless impossible to wide range of climate and temperature, and the tribes deny some purposiveness to the innovation, if innovathemselves present almost every variety of social tion it was; Mr. Lang is here inclined to agree. But organisation, from that of the Dieri and central dis- to engineer such bisection in a large undivided comtricts through the ordinary Australian types to the mune seems beyond the powers even of primitive man. unique system of the Kurnai in Gippsland. Excellent A shorter way may be easily suggested :- the moieties "The Native 'Tribes of South-East Australia." By A: W. Howitt,

practically correspond to two groups of intermarrying DSC Pp. xix + Pro: illustrations and maps. (London: Macmillan and

relatives; we may suppose, then, to begin with, two Co., Ltd., 1904.) Price 218. net.

small families or fire circles, A and B, making inter


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